Sunday, September 22, 2013

On St Stephen's Basilica

Above and below: Exterior of St Stephen Basilica

St. Stephen's Basilica is a Roman Catholic basilica in Budapest, Hungary. It is named in honour of Stephen, the first King of Hungary, whose right hand is housed in the reliquary. It was the sixth largest church building in Hungary before 1920. It is of course, to me, one of the most prominent sights not to be missed in Budapest. After picking up my dropped jaw in the Hungarian Opera House, I came out to the street again, only to be welcomed by continuous drizzle. Shucks! So I walked further down away from the Heroes Square, towards the river. And there it was, the beautiful basilica. It was of course, by then, closed to public. So I returned the next day. First thing in the morning. It wasn't open until 9 or so. I arrived at 8. Speaking about being kiasu, LOL. There was a small fees for entrance, but all the guidebooks suggest a visit to this beautiful structure. The dome was said to have collapsed in 1868, leading to the delay of the completion of the church in 1905. But lo and behold, since its completion, it stood majestically in the city. Upon entering the church, the beauty of the church was again, another jaw-dropping experience. Carvings were so intricate. Paintings were all live-like. It was just pure serenity and calm.

All above: Interiors of St Stephen Basillica

I spend spent some time sitting on the chair, admiring the beauty of the church. The doom was almost 3 storey high, making the accoustics in the church a perfect place for concert. And true that, I was back in the evening for the second performance in a church, one that involves sopranos and live music. The experience was beyond what words can describe. Before I forget, there's this sacred chamber behind the altar. And inside the chamber, there lies the hand of King Stephen...

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